Diy baby chick feeder and waterer

Homemade Chick Waterer • The Prairie Homestead

When I was meandering through the aisle of the feed store the other day, I almost grabbed one of those plastic chick waterers. I knew we were going to be needing one soon, since the coop is clean and shiny and the chicks are set to arrive in a couple weeks.

But of course, my craziness  innovative, frugal mentality won out, and I decided I would challenge myself to create my own chick waterer from materials I had at home.

After several conversations with my scientifically-minded husband regarding the laws of physics, I scrounged up various plastic containers and began to conduct experiments.

Let’s just say I should have payed more attention to our conversations, as I ended some with some flooded counters and sopping wet dish towels.

Anyway. I do believe I have mastered the elusive chick waterer. I am excited to share my findings with you, in hopes of saving you several physics lessons and wet kitchen floors.

First off, here is what I came up with after treasure hunting around my home:

My intial idea was to repurpose this old parmesan cheese container for the top portion. I then cut the bottom off of a plastic gallon jug to make a “dish” that is around 3 inches tall.

However, after some trial runs, I found that the parmesan container didn’t work because the lid did not seal securely enough.

So I found a 48 oz lemon juice bottle instead. I highly recommend using a bottle that has a small cap, since it’s important that the container holding the water be airtight.

I then poked a small hole, about the diameter of a pencil, near the bottom of the jug.

I used a hot glue gun to attach the bottle to the tray. I didn’t want to use any sort of glue that might leach into the water and harm the chicks.

And now you are ready to fill ‘er up. The tray should fill until the hole is covered, and then stop. When the chicks drink, the bottle should slowly release water to provide fresh water at all times. A self-refreshing waterer is more ideal than an open pan, since it prevents the chicks from taking a bath or drowning. And we don’t want that.

Ready to make your own?

Homemade Chick Waterer Notes

  • There are numerous options when it comes to raw materials. Dig through your recycling box, garbage can, or pantry to see what will work. The bottom tray needs to be several inches larger in diameter than your water container. Some ideas could include: milk jugs, yogurt tubs, gallon jugs, large plastic water bottles, etc.


  • Make sure to thoroughly wash everything before assembly and don’t use any container that might have had substances that would be toxic to the chicks.


  • The container that you choose to hold the water must have a lid and be air tight.


  •  Be mindful of where you place the hole. If it is too high, the tray will overflow. If it is too low, the water level might be unreachable for the chicks.


  • If the water does not want to flow, try increasing the size of your hole.


Of course, these same principles could be applied to a larger scale to make a full-sized chicken waterer. If Prairie Baby was older, this would have made a great science experiment. But as of right now, she is more interested in trying to chew on the containers. Oh well, maybe eventually. 😉

Have you ever made a homemade chicken waterer? What materials did you use?

14 DIY Chicken Waterer And Feeders Ideas You Can Make Easily

Published: · Modified: by Allison · This post may contain affiliate links · This blog generates income via ads

Chickens love to create a mess while taking water on any domestic farm. Conventional waterers get dirty with contaminating particulates, causing deadly effects. And you’ll have to make frequent checkups for refill, cleanup & decontamination.

Why not start framing the chicks with some modern household methods? There are several convenient ideas available on DIY chicken waterer. Check the list for narrowing down the options to utilize some of your invalid, useless materials.

1. Reshaped Empty Jug Waterer

Cutting an empty milk jug can give sufficient depth for holding enough water. The idea is elementary, requiring no additional details on words/pictures.

Looking into the standstill pictures, you’ll probably know what to do or how. Make sure the opening is reasonably large without featuring any sharp edge.

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2. Baby Chicken Waterer

Even the smallest chicks need water but require particular caution. Likewise, you can’t think of any heightened or somewhat deep sources of water for newbies.

National Geography captures the ultimate trick of providing cute, small, baby chicks. The design is similar to the universal 5-gallon bucket watering system. But it utilizes a small container resting on a shallow plate to hold the water.

Onscreen numbered steps reveal the job in simple words with understandable commands. Poking some holes before filling the water will prep the system.

3. Homemade Automatic Waterer

The project comes delightfully simple with no time-consuming steps or costly purchase. It gives an immediate backup for delivering water in the absence of the owner.

Trickle irrigation tubing through a reasonably sized PVC pipe can accommodate the facility. A 6” pipe, measuring 18” long rests on two coops to serve the water. And you can easily extend or shorten the requirement based on your farm facility or flock number.

Paying attention to the inlet flow with the outlet is specifically crucial for its design. The words should explain the entire assembly without taking much of your time.

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4. Basic Watering Facility

It appears more like an amateur homemade experiment on available resources. The tutorial utilizes plastic containers instead of a typical bucket or other materials.

You just need to open a hole right on the bottom of an empty plastic bottle. Place the modified container over a slightly larger plastic cap/pan/plate to fill the bottle with water. The outcome looks like a miniature version of standard DIY bucket waterer projects.

No doubt, the facility can meet immediate requirements for a limited number of chickens. Therefore, you’ll have to consider a larger facility for an entire flock.

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5. Nipple Dripper Waterer

Using a nipple dripper can specifically eliminate the chances of water contamination. And the video comes with a simple yet functional project on a watering system. Live commentary will keep you engaged in the demonstration, explaining all steps on site.

The intended design features a reasonably sized water container with a drilled PVC pipe. You just need to insert the nipple drippers for feeding the chickens. Obviously, you can use different numbers of drippers, container capacity & facilitation on the flock size.

6. Automated Watering System

Spending a mere $5 will solve a great deal of work on your chicken farm. Apart from filling the thirst, the supportive assembly helps with the improvement of health.

The mainframe consists of one 5-gallon bucket resting on an oil pan or ground feeder. Electric drill with drill bit will induce holes for allowing the water to flow. There comes no defined section on the process; the presentation keeps an incredibly simplified notion.

Some very peculiar, useful & essential considerations come within the explanation. Among the sentences, you’ll find standstill pictures of the entire processing.

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7. Cheap Waterer + Feeder

Though the subject specifically implies waterer, you can solve the feeding issue simultaneously. Standard 5-gallon bucket cover for both, letting you save further effort. Simple words without additional details appear to cover the basics.

As it happens, you’ll have to manage the supplies to keep the processing simple. The article already comes in separated segments – one for the feeder & one for the waterer. But preparing the bucket follows precisely the same method concerning with the drilling portion.

Integration of some convenient pictures will let you catch the implementations precisely. You just need to continue with the written information for absolute clarity. And the approximate cost remains close to $1, with leftover buckets.

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8. Discarded Bottle Waterer

Shape the leftover empty bottles into a functional waterer for chickens. The video tutorial reveals the hacks of attaching two empty Coca-Cola bottles.

Like the video, two different sized bottles can make a perfect joint. Cutting half of one bottle’s horizontal side will open the watering trough. Connecting the larger bottle with the cut one through a glued cap will suffice the assembly.

Of course, the system can facilitate only a limited number of chickens at a time. You’ll have to think of something else for accommodating an enormous flock.

9. Effective Waterer Solution

It’s definitely one great way to make your farm more useful, functional & clean. The solution overcomes almost all the drawbacks of other ground-based waterers. In simple words, you can sigh a breath of relief from frequent refills or cleanups.

Joining some PVC pipes of a certain size will assemble the watering structure. It explicitly includes nipples to feed the whole flock without any discrimination. The idea comes incredibly efficiently, covering for baby, newbie & young chickens.

It starts with a complete layout, followed by optional steps for further enhancement. The article appears pretty long, featuring a good number of pictures. The images captured the whole process, explaining the task visually before the audience.

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10. PVC Watering Container

Keep the chickens watered without any chance of an overturned water container mess. The simple yet mechanical DIY project lets you build a reliable watering structure.

There are only eight steps, covering from the needed supplies to finishing touches. Of course, the job requires a good number of basic hardware for the assembly. You just need to take measurements for making precise cuts, shaping the beams & establishing joints.

Likewise, the tutorial includes a satisfying number of pictures for each step. With the simply worded sentences, you can easily understand the sequence on the first attempt.

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Self-Operating Water Trough

Introducing a simple watering trough is indeed the simplest solution. Assembling some common plumbing materials will provide a satisfactory watering feature.

Minimal background speech supports the introductory portion only. But the assembly appears in a time-lapse video depiction, capturing the entire implementation. The design utilizes two end caps on a half-cut PVC pipe (lengthwise) to shape the horizontal trough.

Rain barrel will collect the water; otherwise, you’ll have to put water by yourself. Attaching a standard garden hose should automate the facility during the rainy season.

12. Secured Chick Waterer

Everything you need to know about chicken waterer comes for the last DIY tutorial. The introduction starts with the limitations of popular, simple & practiced watering facilities. Right there, you should feel the necessity of introducing something more secure.

And the content includes several specified segments to cover the implementation. From materials to the mechanism, the guidance provides all the details within simple words. And structuring the intended waterer appears a straightforward task for any enthusiast.

It also reveals the tricks of getting your chickens attached to the new system eventually. The grit feeder will cover your feeding job, easing the whole management. You’ll get to utilize all the tips for ensuring maximum output from the designed system.

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13. Winterized Waterer Design

Decreased winter temperature may end up freezing the watering system. The specialized project lets you save the flock from getting suffered from thirst.

Of course, the article provides guidance on the available methods than steps. It perfectly suffices the supporting title potion – ‘From Buy to DIY’. You just need to match your resources with the idea towards the implementation.

There are several ways to ensure the liquidity of freshwater in the shivering cold. Improving some readymade tools will help you to maintain a heated water flow.

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14. Functional PVC Waterer

Upgrade your overall skills on DIY projects with innovative implementation. The featured job comes very funny, incredibly functional & reasonably satisfying.

It requires a mere 5-min long modification on a standard sized PVC pipe. You should lock the downside end with a flexible cap to prevent leaks from the bottom. Installing ⅔ readymade poultry water cups will serve the liquid to your chicken.

Floating water level indicator saves your hassle on regular checkups. Integration of copper without polluting the water will keep the system free of algae growth.


From the simplest to reasonably tedious, the article covers the useful ones. You just need to spend some of your time with all the options. Right there, you can quickly determine which method suits your interest.

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Do-it-yourself feeder for chickens from improvised materials: photo and video